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Frequently Asked Questions

Location: 1331 South Street, Hollister, CA 95023
Phone: 831.636.4320

Hours (subject to closure for emergency calls)

  • Open
    • Monday through Friday 10:00am - 5:00pm (Closed for Lunch, 12:30pm - 1:30pm (Subject to Change))
  • Closed
    • Saturday, Sunday, and Holidays

The Most Frequently Asked Questions of Our Shelter...

What do I do if I have an emergency?
The Hollister Animal Shelter provides 24-hour emergency services for injured, sick, and aggressive stray animals. For assistance after normal business hours, please contact the Hollister Police Department at 831.636.4330 and an Animal Control Officer will be dispatched.

What do I do if I find a stray animal after hours?
The Hollister Animal Shelter has introduced newly remodeled night kennels on November 24, 2021. The night kennels are located on the right side of the shelter. There are three large kennels to house dogs and four smaller kennels to house smaller dogs and cats.

Hollister Animal Care and Services would like to remind the public that the night kennels are under surveillance at all times, and are designed to temporarily house live stray animals found within San Benito County when the shelter is closed.

The night kennels are not designed to hold deceased animals. Do not attempt to feed or pet stray animals housed temporarily within the night kennels.

***Do not place owned animals in the night kennels. Owned animals must be surrendered during shelter business hours. Only animals residing within San Benito County may be surrendered at the Hollister Animal Shelter. Any animal that resides within another county must be surrendered within that respective county.***

Please exercise caution when placing a found stray animal into the night kennels. The kennels are self-locking and will not reopen. Stray intake forms are available and are required to be filled out by the finder of the stray animal prior to placing the animal in the night kennels.

Do you provide stray animal pick up?
Animal Control Officers respond to stray animal calls. It is encouraged for finders of these stray animals to attempt to safely confine the animals either behind an enclosed fence or by leash if the finder is comfortable doing so. Safely confining the animal ensures that Animal Control Officers are able to easily locate the animal upon arrival and are able to safely transport it back to the Hollister Animal Shelter.

Animal Control Officers also respond to animal cruelty reporting, animal bites, aggressive animals, deceased animals, and nuisance barking complaints.

Do you have volunteer opportunities?
Volunteers are always in need to provide assistance in carrying out daily duties at the Hollister Animal Shelter. Volunteer applicants must be 18 years of age and volunteer a minimum of 8 hours per month. We encourage qualified and motivated individuals to join our team. For more information, see our Volunteer page.

Do you have animals for adoption?
The goal of the Hollister Animal Shelter is to find loving, forever homes for every adoptable animal. We encourage the public to contact the shelter to find out more information on our adoptable animals and/or visit For more information, see our Animals Available page.

How do I adopt an animal?
Every potential adopter is required to complete an adoption application. Once the application is completed, we ask for the application to be submitted to the Hollister Animal Shelter where a staff member will review it. Upon approval of the application by a staff member, adopters may come down to the shelter for a meet and greet. Once an application is approved, the application will be valid for six months. If an adopter does not find an animal that is a perfect fit for their home and family, we encourage the adopter to come back at a later time to view new animals. If an adopter is interested in adopting a dog, we require the adopter to bring any other dogs they may have at home to the meet and greet to ensure that all dogs get along well. If adopters are certain about adopting an animal, they may adopt the animal the same day of the meet and greet.

Adoption fees include the cost of the animal’s spay or neuter, rabies vaccination, distemper/parvo/bordetella vaccinations, microchipping, flea treatment, and licensing if applicable.

To submit an adoption application, see our Animal Services page.

Can I make a report online?
(**When Tyler311 on the City Website is implemented, complaints can be reported here regarding barking dogs, curbing dogs, deceased animals, unleashed dogs, and unsanitary animal conditions). See our News page for more information. **Tyler311 is currently in internal testing phase**

How do I report a lost/found animal?
The Hollister Animal Shelter maintains a directory of lost and found pets that is available to the public. If an animal is lost or found, contact the shelter to file a lost or found report. By law, finders of animals must notify the Hollister Animal Shelter as pets are considered personal property. A found report will be filed and finders are allowed to hold onto the animal for a period of thirty days. Once that thirty day period has been reached, finders become the legal owners of the found animal if no owner comes forward to reclaim their pet. If finders do not wish to hold onto the animal, they are encouraged to drop off the animal at the Hollister Animal Shelter, or they may call the shelter to place a call for Animal Control Officers to pick up the animal.

How and where do I license my dog?
Any dog residing in the City of Hollister or the unincorporated area of San Benito County requires a dog license. Licenses can be obtained at the Hollister Animal Shelter located at 1331 South Street. Dog owners must provide proof of their dog’s current rabies vaccination in order to receive a dog license. The duration of the license coincides with the duration of the rabies vaccination. See our Dog License Application for more information.

Are cats required to have a license?
Cats are not required to be licensed in San Benito County and the City of Hollister, however they are required to have a current rabies vaccination.

What do I do if a dog bites me or if my dog bites someone?
Bats, skunks, raccoons, and foxes are some of the many animals who transmit rabies. San Benito County and the City of Hollister both require current rabies vaccinations on all dogs and cats. If you are bitten or scratched by any warm-blooded animal, including your pet dog or cat, you must contact the Hollister Animal Shelter, Environmental Health Department, or your physician immediately to report the incident. Animals that are reported to have bitten a person are required to be placed on a state mandated quarantine according to California’s Health and Safety Code, Chapter One: Rabies Control [121575 – 121710].

Does the Animal Shelter provide any vet (medical) services/ or Low-cost Spaying / Neutering?
The Hollister Animal Shelter does not provide any medical services for the public. Below is a list of veterinarians and low-cost spay/neuter clinics and low-cost vaccination clinics.

Animal Hospital of Hollister – 831.637.0031, 191 San Felipe Rd Suite F, Hollister, CA 95023
Family Pet Care Center – 831.637.7387, 38 East St, Hollister, CA 95023
San Benito Veterinary Center – 831.637.2580, 1280 Sunnyslope Rd, Hollister, CA 95023
Protect Your Pet Mobile Vaccination Services – 831.594.6557 (1st, 2nd, and 4th Saturday of every month at Lil Pals Pet World, 401 McCray St, Hollister, CA 95023)

Can I microchip my pet at the Animal Shelter?
The Hollister Animal Shelter provides microchipping for cats and dogs for a fee of $15. The microchip is a type of permanent identification if your pet gets lost or stolen. The microchip is not used as a tracking (GPS) device. Your pet’s microchip is inserted between the shoulder blades just under the skin and it only takes a few minutes to insert the chip. The Hollister Animal Shelter will register your pet for you under AKC Reunite.

Does the Animal Shelter accept donations of blankets, towels, toys, food etc..?
Donations of blankets, toys, food, and other animal items are accepted and are greatly appreciated. We would like to thank the community for continuously providing generous and necessary items for our animals here at the shelter.

How do I report a barking dog?
Barking dog complaints can be reported by contacting the shelter at 831.636.4320. Animal Control Officers must be provided with a current address as to where the barking dog resides. Please refer to our common city and county animal ordinances on our Animal Services page regarding nuisance barking. Animal Control Officers will be able to issue a warning via standard mail to the dog owner regarding the nuisance barking. Animal Control Officers can provide dog owners with several suggestions to mitigate the barking. Sometimes dog owners are away from home and are not aware of their dog’s behavior. If the nuisance barking persists, complainants are encouraged to document a log of the times and duration of the barking. Since Animal Control Officers are not witnessing or are being affected by the nuisance barking, this log would be considered as evidence for officers. In addition to completing a log, complainants must also complete an Affidavit of Complaint form and submit it to the Hollister Animal Shelter. With a completed Affidavit of Complaint and documented bark log, Animal Control Officers may issue a citation to the dog owner.

What can I do about feral cats?
If you have a feral cat issue, we encourage residents to contact the Hollister Animal Shelter at 831.636.4320 to speak with a staff member.

Who do I call for problems with wildlife?
If you are having problems with wildlife, we encourage residents to contact the SPCA Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation Center at 831.264.5427, located at 1002 Monterey Salinas Hwy, Salinas, CA 93908.

Does the Animal Shelter accept owner surrenders?
The Hollister Animal Shelter only accepts owner-surrendered dogs or cats within San Benito County for a fee of $64.00 per animal. It is required of San Benito County residents to schedule an appointment with the Hollister Animal Shelter prior to surrendering their animal. A surrender questionnaire is required to be completed as well as providing veterinary records and proof of residency in San Benito County at the time of the surrender appointment. For further information regarding animal surrenders, please contact the Hollister Animal Shelter at 831.636.4320.

Who do I call to pick up a deceased animal?
If you have found a deceased animal, you may report it to the Hollister Animal Shelter and an Animal Control Officer will be dispatched to pick up the animal during business hours.

Who do I call for bee problems?
The Hollister Animal Shelter does not handle problems with bees. A bee removal service or pest control service would need to be contacted.

Can I make an anonymous complaint?
If you wish to file a complaint, however want to remain anonymous, an Animal Control Officer will require your name, telephone number, and address to contact you for further information regarding the complaint. All complaints are anonymous unless you are required to fill out an Affidavit of Complaint form for Animal Control Officers to issue a citation.

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